The internet messaging has outnumbered SMS messaging for the first time in its 20-year history, the research firm Informa has found.
Thanks to BlackBerry’s flagship messaging service – BlackBerry Messenger – the users of Apple and Google Smartphones can soon send messages over an internet connection free of cost and avoid the fees charged by the telephone carriers.
Informa reports that the popularity of instant messages surpassed SMS messages for the first time last year and it is likely to be doubled by the end of 2013. The report states that 19 billion instant messages were sent in 2012 compared with 17.6 billion SMS messages.
The firm predicted that the Smartphone users will send 41 billion instant messages this year and this figure will grow to 50 billion by the end of next year. On the other hand, the phone users will send only 21 billion in 2014.
SMS service, which was first added to Nokia phones in 1993, remained the standard method for sending short text messages between the phones for two decades. However, in recent years it has met challenges from free instant message applications such as Apple IMessage and WhatsApp.
The reason for increasing popularity of these instant messaging tools is that their potential is not limited to text trade between phones and they allow the users to send group messages and share videos and photos as well.
Recently, BlackBerry has announced that it is planning to expand the BBM service to Android and iOS devices this summer, a move which may prove to eliminate SMS which has already seen significant decreases in use.
The company said BBM service currently has over 60 million monthly active users and more than 10 billion instant messages are sent every day.
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